Houston has lost four in a row
Astros swept by A's as Oakland grabs another walk-off win
After dropping the first two games of the series, the Astros still had plenty of reasons to shrug off the recent struggles and pick things back up to move closer to locking up their playoff spot. They'd move no closer on Sunday, though, as Oakland would hand Houston another loss to end their road trip with four losses in a row.
Final Score: A's 4, Astros 3
Astros' Record: 91-65, first in the AL West
Winning Pitcher: Lou Trivino (7-7)
Losing Pitcher: Ryne Stanek (3-5)
Odorizzi goes four innings in return from IL
After landing on the IL with a foot injury he experienced covering first on September 13th, Jake Odorizzi made his return to the mound to face the A's on Sunday. He did decent, allowing one run in his four innings of work which came on a two-out RBI single to former Astro Tony Kemp in the bottom of the second. He otherwise kept Oakland at bay, allowing four hits and two walks to make his final line 4.0 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K, 82 P.
Houston jumps in front
With no chance at the win due to not making it five innings, he would at least get off the hook for the loss, as in the top of the fifth, his offense tied things up with three straight singles, the third by Jose Siri to make it a 1-1 game. Cristian Javier took over out of the bullpen in the bottom of the inning, and he came on sharp to strike out the side.
Breggy Bomb for the lead! 💣#ForTheH pic.twitter.com/CmmJbo8M46
— Houston Astros (@astros) September 26, 2021
The Astros kept hitting the ball in the sixth, getting a go-ahead solo homer to start the frame by Alex Bregman, followed by a single by Yordan Alvarez and RBI double by Yuli Gurriel, making it a two-run game. Javier stayed hot in the bottom of the inning, striking out two more batters in a 1-2-3 inning to maintain the new 3-1 lead.
Astros swept in Oakland
Oakland cracked Javier in the bottom of the seventh, getting a leadoff single followed by a hit-by-pitch to put two on base. They would get one run across on a sac bunt and RBI groundout, prompting Dusty Baker to make a move to bring in Phil Maton, who would give up a game-tying infield single before finishing the inning.
A scoreless eighth by both teams sent the game to the ninth, where the Astros had a chance in the top half. A one-out single by Jose Siri put the go-ahead run on base, and on a two-out single by Alex Bregman, Siri would reach, and unfortunately run through, third base and get thrown out at home to keep the game 3-3.
Ryne Stanek, who got through the eighth on just seven pitches, tried to force extras as he returned to the mound in the ninth. Oakland put the winning run on third against him, getting back-to-back singles to start the inning before a flyout and intentional walk loaded the bases as Houston would bring in Ryan Pressly to try and get out of the jam. Pressly threw one pitch, which was turned around for the walk-off hit to give Oakland the sweep and keep Houston waiting to clinch their playoff spot.
Up Next: With this road trip completed, the Astros will travel back to Houston before an off day on Monday. Tuesday, they'll start their final week and last homestand of the regular season, with the opener of three against the AL-best Rays at 7:10 PM Central. The expected pitching matchup is still to be determined, but currently, it sets up to be Michael Wacha (3-5, 5.49 ERA) for Tampa Bay and Jose Urquidy (8-3, 3.56 ERA) for Houston.